The contribution Amy makes to the healing of the guests at Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center comes from a place deep within her. Having personally faced and learned to manage issues of addiction and the impact of a family history with mental health concerns, Amy connects with the Center’s residents on a profound level of understanding. From her light and playful energy during evening activities, to her quiet comforting protection through the long hours of the night, Amy’s involvement in each guest’s wellbeing is very personal. The development of her own strength and courage, which enabled her to rise above the many hurdles before her, originated with the warm environment of caring and non-judgment she found right here in her own community. It was the need to give back, to help in the manner she had been helped, and to share these new found abilities that was the catalyst in her decision to be part of the work at the Center.
Amy nurtures her sense of wholeness by maintaining close-knit family connections, taking part in local volunteer projects and events, spending copious amounts of time in the great outdoors, consistently attending support meetings, and always looking for the humor in life to keep the smiles and laughs alive Amy’s work both here and at a centrally located homeless shelter in the Lower Mainland offer her ample opportunity to share her experience and knowledge with others who are in their own process of becoming addiction-free.
Angela is a Chopra Certified Yoga Instructor who, having practiced yoga herself for eight years, found that she was a natural when it came to teaching this ancient form of healing. A great love of yoga and a great love of life brought her to the center to share the gift of yoga, laughter and love. Angie is also a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and Student of Integrative Healing & Way of the Heart Graduate. These additional credentials enable her to help promote the optimal health and happiness of each individual while continuing to explore additional/alternative ways to aid others and herself in returning to wholeness. While her “assigned” roles are Chopra Yoga/Meditation Instructor, Nurse and Support Worker, Angie says she continually plays and switches up her roles at the Center. She feels it's important to embrace all aspects of our character and share those aspects with each other - the fool, the wise one, the playful child, the mysterious one, the listener, the observer, the engager.... so many roles, so much to enjoy.
Angie describes her journey to yoga as a welcoming embrace. She fell in love with Chopra ideals wholeheartedly at a weeklong Chopra event called Seduction of Spirit, also affectionately known as 'a slumber party for the soul’. Here she developed an even deeper appreciation for her yoga practice. The reason why she teaches is explained in one phrase: “the light & bliss and often laughter that emits from a person's face the first time they discover the joy of yoga.” Angie is often known to burst out in spontaneous laughter herself during a yoga class. Grateful to see the beauty of living a compassionate, courageous and authentic life, Angie is honoured to be part of a wellness team that exemplifies these qualities... a team that creates a safe sacred space for the individual to allow their most 'juicy' truest self to emerge.
Prentice enjoys helping people work towards their individual wellness goals and offering support and kindness during their journey of recovery and increased self awareness. He is a Registered Psychiatric Nurse (RPN), and provides nursing support to the center on an on-call basis..
Prentice lives by the acronym COAL, from Dr. Daniel Siegel, which is short for Curious, Open, Accepting / Allowing, Loving kindness. These principles inform how he shows up in the world and are a cornerstone of his practice.
Celeste is our Wellness Staff Supervisor at the Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center. She is also a certified yoga teacher in Hatha and Vinyasa disciplines. She has been teaching Yoga and meditation since 2002 and has developed a strong belief in the healing benefits of the seven spiritual laws. She says that, when put into practice, they can transform our relationship with ourselves and others. Celeste believes Yoga is not just for the duration that you are on the mat, but rather it is a practice, a tool for revolutionizing your attitude in life, moving your heart, mind and body into a place of balance and inner peace. At the Center, Celeste teaches yoga and meditation in the mornings and regularly facilitates some of the mind, body, spirit sessions in the afternoons.
Her years of instructing yoga, coupled with the interaction she has had with students and her own personal experiences have lead Celeste to know, with certainty, that her true purpose lies in supporting people during times of transition. In addition to her own daily practice of meditation and yoga, Celeste receives wholeness in her life through the various art projects she always seems to have on the go: painting, sewing, jewelry-making, as well as singing and playing music with friends. Celeste enjoys just about anything that gets her creative energy flowing.
Lori supports health and healing at Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center through techniques such as classic massage, shiatsu and conscious relaxation exercises. She was drawn by the natural beauty that surrounds the Center, which is always welcoming and grounding. She finds the calm setting a great reprieve from the busy world. With a strong belief and foundation in Ayurveda, a Vedic system of traditional medicine and a form of alternative medicine native to India, Lori draws seemingly endless ways to find balance and wholeness. She also sustains her personal wellbeing by walking in nature and nurturing her relationships.
Sanaz is one of the support staff at the Center. She is as unique as her name is which means “someone who comes your way once in a life time”. Sanaz starts and ends her days with one hour of meditation, followed by yoga which she believes is more a workout for your spirit and soul than your body.
One of Sanaz’s foremost passions in life is painting. This talented artist paints in two opposite painting styles: vibrant colored abstract paintings; and realistic animal portraits. Sanaz is on a constant quest of bettering herself and bringing out the good in others. Her soul purpose in life is to help other beings she comes in contact with on a daily basis, to love and appreciate themselves. She is very involved in her community and volunteers at different events and fundraisers throughout the year.
Sanaz believes we are all spirits living in a tangible body that allows people to experience living on earth as human beings. That we all just temporarily inhabit our body and one day we will have to return this body back to mother-nature.
Emily is part of the team of kitchen magicians who creates and prepares the delicious and nutritious vegetarian fare that is so loved by all the residents at CAWC. She brings to the Center a love of food, a passion for food security, growing, cooking and health. Her background includes film industry catering and craft services. In addition she owned and operated a cafe, established community kitchens, taught food related skills and nutrition, and was involved in community development around food security. For the residents at the Center, she says she will cook “yummy things” and encourages the diners to tell her about their favorite foods and meals. For fun, Emily loves to be in the garden, out walking with her dogs and taking part in activities that allow her to be creative: playing and writing music, sewing, painting, cooking and writing. In addition, in her “girl cave” she is a carpenter! But most importantly, Emily loves cooking and eating well for and with her family.
Jeff is the Coordinator of Clinical Services at Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center.A Certified Practitioner in Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama, Jeff delights in working with groups and finds the healing experiences offered by the participants to be compelling. His commitment to this field is a reflection of his passion for health and wellness and he believes growth and change can be both fun and challenging. Jeff has worked as a therapist for 18 years, having received his Masters of Education in Counseling Psychology from McGill University. His credentials in the fields of Psychotherapy and Psychodrama were granted by the American Board of Examiners following extended study and practical experience in these specialized fields. With the support of the Canadian Mental Health Association and the Center of Addiction Research, Jeff authored a 52 page interactive self-help book on problem substance use. Entitled Problem Substance Use Workbook, this publication is distributed by BC Partners for Mental Health and Addictions Information. In addition, Jeff has served as the Campus Project Coordinator with eight post-secondary institutions in British Columbia, working toward improving policies and action to support mental health and non-problem substance use. Jeff brings more than “book learning” to the individuals he works with. Having what he calls “up and close personal” experience in the area of destructive compelling behaviours and mental health, Jeff provides residents with a combination of understanding and real-life evidence that there is light at the end of the tunnel. For Jeff, friendships play a critical role in his wellness and he makes an effort to connect in-person every day, outside of work, with at least one friend. He also enjoys hanging out with Skybear (the dog), daily exercise (running, climbing, skate-skiing, biking, etc.), creative pursuits (e.g. making videos and writing), and daily meditation and yoga. Jeff also is a believer in the health benefits of getting a good night’s sleep, and regularly practices this wellness technique between 10:30 pm and 5:30 am.
Sophie works at the Center offering Art Therapy Workshops, offering an opportunity for guests to experiment with colours, play and connect with themselves and others in a new way.
Sophie grew up in a thriving arts community in Montreal and studied Studio Arts at Concordia. After working as a painter for a few years, she longed to work with people at a deeper level. With an interest in Psychology, she chose to study Art Therapy and has worked with Squamish Nations children, has a private practice, facilitates creative workshops and also facilitates the Point Zero Painting Experience.
As a life-long student of metaphysics, Tara continues to be fascinated with the nature of reality and who we are. This journey has included studying Anthropology and Philosophy, traveling to sacred spots, meditation and studying and working with different energy healing modalities. As an Energy Healer, integrating the body, mind and spirit is key for balance and well-being, and it is with that shared approach that Tara embraces the progressive model of the Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center.
At the Center, Tara’s role is that of Support Staff.
Lyn is a Vedic Master trained at the Chopra University and is a certified teacher of Meditation, Yoga, and Ayurveda. Lyn has an impressive history following her interest in different healing modalities and has taught Meditation and Spiritual Healing for over 20 years.Lyn believes all healing is self healing; and healing of self sometimes needs the support, love and compassion of knowledgeable people trained to hold a healing space for that person. Lyn loves to teach because teaching offers the opportunity to simultaneously be taught; a phenomena of giving and receiving. Lyn says “I feel honored to be on the staff of Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center.” We feel honored to be working with Lyn!
Michael is a Registered holistic Psychotherapist, Midlife Awakening Specialist and Spiritual Counsellor. Over the past 25 years, he has worked extensively with clients who have been diagnosed with varying degrees of “dis-ease” in health, career or relationship areas of their lives. Michael describes his fit with working at the Center as “coming home”. Michael has an integrated approach to healing using evidence-based "science" while honouring the “art” part of transformational healing.
Nirmala believes “Life is precious and priceless! We all deserve to live in the present and experience joy and healthy relationships”.
With this in mind, she founded Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center (formerly Paradise Valley Wellness Centre) which is offering cutting edge high quality assessment and therapeutic services for individuals and families impacted by destructive compelling behaviours. With over twenty three years experience as an addiction specialist in programming, protocol and management, her vision is to strive for balance and integration of body, mind and spirit required for healing and wellness. For Nirmala, work is more than just a career. It’s a calling. By combining her business acumen with her inherent sense of compassion she has enabled hundreds of people with addiction and emotional issues to regain control of their lives.
She was a nominee for YWCA women of distinction awards in the business and professions category in 2008 and she was also nominated for 2008 Celebration of Business Excellence Award in the business category.
She is a Chopra Center instructor certified in Primordial Sound Meditation and is passionate about sharing timeless wisdom tools for mind-body health, deeper life fulfillment and emotional healing.
Tina started her studies in Horticulture Therapy and the relationship that exists between people and plants, specifically how nature based activities can be used as a tool to treat depression and anxiety, as well as families and patients experiencing the end of life challenges in hospice. Mental health and addictions have always been an area of personal interest to Tina as well.
Being at the Center allows Tina the opportunity to share parts of her knowledge, while in turn learning countless more ways to live a harmonious and balanced life. Tina works at the Center as Support Staff and finds the unique stories of everyone’s lives fascinating, and the journey towards greater levels of mind, body and spirit awareness a profound transformation to witness.
Sarah is a therapist at the Center where she teaches groups and works with guests in individual therapy. Sarah see part of her role as ensuring she has a strong self-care practice so she can help contribute to holding ground with people who are in their process. Sarah holds faith that change is possible and that who people are is already enough. Sarah’s role is to be present, compassionate, non-judgmental, equal, accepting, and open.
She started her training in Psychology at McGill University, and then followed a passion for studying the ingredients of a fulfilling life to Australia where she completed a Master’s degree. It was there 10 years ago that she started practicing Iyengar and Hatha yoga and Vipassana meditation, in parallel to the pursuit of intellectual understandings of the human psyche. She found that these wove together well to integrate and deepen her understanding, that wisdom needed mind, heart, and body. Sarah became passionate about Buddhist and yogic philosophy, and has had on her bedside table a few inspiring books since then, in addition to attending a few meditation retreats every year which allows her to know indelibly and connect with the still deep place within her
Lara works with the guests at the Center as a massage therapist. Helping people is one of her passions, especially those with addictions. She believes we are all here to learn our life’s lessons and to overcome them.
Lara began her massage therapy path over 9 years ago beginning with Shiatsu Acupressure Massage. Aside from being a full time student, Lara’s passions lay in sport; skiing, mountain biking, triathlons, yoga, stretching and going to the gym.
Sharon is the Office Manager at the Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center and may be one of the first people you speak to or meet when you arrive. In addition to managing the administration at the Center, Sharon contributes greatly to the general wellbeing of the residents and other staff members through her friendly, professional and compassionate nature. Throughout her 14-year career, Sharon has always been in the role of supporting and caring for the people she works for and with. She has great empathy for people of all walks of life, great respect for all individuals she encounters and an innate interest in the well-being of others. The opportunity to become part of the team at the Center has enabled her to finally be involved in an organization whose goal meshes with her own: to offer care and wellbeing to the people for whom it provides service – an opportunity that she feels was meant to be.
Sharon’s life experiences have taught her that we are all doing the best we can at every given moment but sometimes a helping hand is required to learn new skills to help us cope with new situations or to deal with our past. Sharon is also wise enough to take time for her own well-being. Her decision to live in Squamish was a great contributor to her wholeness. She loves getting out with friends to go mountain biking, hiking, walking, swimming, skiing, just being together outdoors or gathering for meal. She also really enjoys creating quiet time for herself every day, whether it is meditation, relaxing at home or having play time with her two cats.
Tannis is a therapist who brings healing through the arts to Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center. With a Masters of Fine Arts degree in Dance and Theatre, Tannis’ first twenty professional years were devoted to creating experimental dance-theatre in New York City. After discovering the healing power of art by working with people with multiple disabilities, she earned a Masters in Somatic Psychology in San Francisco, where she also became a Board Certified Dance-movement Therapist, Registered Drama Therapist and creator of Sacred Theatre. Since moving to Vancouver, Tannis has also become a Spiritual Director.
She brings almost thirty years’ experience of healing through the arts to her work with individuals, groups, adolescents and adults, especially those with eating problems, addictions and trauma. She has co-coordinated a hospital eating disorder program, taught on the university level, performed and taught in the US and Europe, and directed a theatre company of disabled and non-disabled actors. Her psychological theoretical framework is a combination of Jungian, psychodynamic, somatic and bio-energetic approaches.
In Vancouver Tannis has a private therapy practice, and was Clinical Supervisor for Pacifica Treatment Centre. She has been an Artist in Residence for the Vancouver School board, and taught at Tooba Centre for Physical Theatre, and Main Dance and Sourcepoint School for Shiatsu. In addition, she leads workshops in Authentic Movement, Ecstatic Body Postures, Moving Prayer and Community Movement Rituals. Tannis envisioned and directed the 2009 Interspiritual Sacred Dance Festival – the first event of its kind. She recently completed training in somatic approaches to the treatment of trauma and developmental trauma at the Sensori-motor Psychotherapy Institute.
Tannis says her friends and family are the Center of her life. She enjoys caring for her garden, walking in the forest, reading and going out dancing, to movies, dance and theatre performances. Her personal practices include daily Qi Gong, Pilates, prayer and singing.
Linnea is a Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner and a works at the Center as a registered acupuncturist. Her honours degree in Comparative Development Studies has guided her to travel extensively in India and Nepal where she became aware of amazing alternate forms of medicine and healing.
At the Center, Linnea offers her 12 years of experience to group evening acupuncture sessions, where each guest receives individual attention to help with their unique healing process.
Mischell has always been active and believes that a mind-body connection is key to the healing process for anything from physical to emotional ailments. She is a natural nurturer and enjoys being around and meeting new people.
At home, Mischell does her best to balance her own needs with those of her family. A lover of running, yoga and family, Mischell tries to listen to her body and rest when she needs to, get outside when she needs to and eat what her body is asking for.
At the Center, Mischell works with Sharon Haimes as an Administrative Assistant.
Dr. Lawrence Klein
After receiving medical training on both Canadian coasts, Lawrence gained 10 years of experience working in a variety of situations across Canada and Internationally. He ran a 100 bed hospital in Indonesia, created medical programs for off-shore oil rigs in Siberia, and even sampled the luxurious yet busy life of a cruise-ship physician.
More recently Lawrence has practiced both Emergency Medicine and Family Medicine in Squamish – incorporating his passions for mind-body and whole person healing, as well as nutritional and complementary approaches to health. He feels that spiritual growth is our inevitable birthright – and that such growth can be nurtured by compassionate guidance along the often painful path to wholeness and maturity
Laurin Kyle Boyle
Laurin is a Chopra Certified Yoga and Meditation Teacher. As a staff member she supports guests by listening to them, sharing tools that she has found helpful in her own path such as Heartmath, the Passion Test, Laughter Yoga and Emotional Freedom Technique, and she helps to facilitate a process called The Work by Byron Katie to lift limiting beliefs. Laurin says that she has discovered that absolutely everything is always in Divine Order and that every moment is perfectly orchestrated to serve everyone's healing and happiness - staff and guests alike. The evening conversations at CAWC have been especially powerful as she recognizes that everyone at the Center gets exactly what they need at the right time! “If I were to use one word to describe my experience at the Center, it would be Grace.”
Contributing to Laurin’s personal sense of balance and wholeness are her regular practices of meditation, journaling, yoga, lots of laughter and play with friends and family. Laurin’s many interests include , spiritual coaching, spending time in nature, writing children's stories and poetry, photography and painting, organizing retreats and sweat lodges at her lake home, taking students through the Ministerial process for deep healing and helping people listen and connect to Inner Wisdom as a Spiritual Minister.
Helen’s role at Chopra Addiction and Wellness Center is that of Wellness Facilitator, aiding guests in the recovery process in a supportive and non-judgmental way. An addict in recovery for several years herself, she brings to the residents at the Center her strength and hope, fully realizing through her personal experience, the devastation that addiction wreaks on the individual as well as the family. Helen is very active in NA and AA and also follows the Chopra philosophy. She is aware that those who are suffering from either addiction or depression or stress have many personal choices available to them in their path to wellness.
Helen has completed a course in Addiction Counseling from the Granton Institute of Technology in Toronto and has participated in many workshops and seminars dealing with addictions, stress and spiritual health. An avid hiker, swimmer and cyclist, Helen relishes the outdoors and communing with nature on a very spiritual level.
Lisa has spent years exploring relationships, the body-mind connection, lightness and how we expand our repertoire of who we are and can be. Academically this has led Lisa to achieve a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre and an Masters in Counselling Psychology. She has continued her training to include various emotional body rediscovery practices, both somatic and bio-energetic analysis. Her role here at the Center is as a Therapist as well as an occasional gardener.
Stacey finished her doctorate in Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara, California in 2014. As a Squamish resident since 2004, Stacey knew about the Center and imagined it might be a place she would fit with a shared focus on underlying issues and holistic living. Stacey feels that life has a way of unfolding and finding herself in such a complimentary environment feels like a grace initiated opening. She is grateful to be here J At the Center, Stacey is a psychotherapist, providing individual and group sessions as well as Chopra educational sessions.
Tamara is a Registered Clinical Counselor and Expressive Arts Therapist. Tamara believes that creativity is healing by its very nature and is a powerful tool for self-expression and self discovery. At the Centre, Tamara leads provides individual and group therapy, psycho educational sessions and art therapy groups. She is also trained in EMDR, and has a certificate in Aboriginal Focusing Oriented Therapy and Complex Trauma. She is also a certified homeopath and a trained restorative justice facilitator with an interest in conflict transformation.
Paul is a calm individual with a passion for helping and listening to others. Paul believes that balance is the key to life. After receiving his Bachelors in Psychology, Paul worked as the Human Resources Manager in Whistler. Using this experience, Paul wants to help others in their wellness and balance in their life. Here at the Center, Paul works as part of our support staff team. He enjoys meeting and connecting with new guests and contributing to their wellness at the center.
Having grown up in Squamish Allan remembers hearing about the opening of the Centre in 2009. He has joined the team at Chopra Wellness Centre because of his interest in well being, balanced living, and continual personal and spiritual growth.
Allan is a support worker at the Centre. He is here to assist guests with making their stay more comfortable, which can include lending an ear whenever they may need someone to talk to, as well as other tasks.
Christy is a strong believer in the mind-body-spirit connection and a passionate practitioner of Mindfulness meditation and Yoga. As well as being a yoga instructor and support staff at the Center, Christy shares her passion for wellness with others as a Licensed Practical Nurse. Having both witnessed and experienced the profound effects of yoga and meditation, Christy is motivated to help others on their journey to a deeper awareness of their body, mind and spirit.
Having committed many years as a primary caregiver to a loved one who struggles with obstacles in daily life, Denise looks for her own ways to balance her own wellbeing. Taking care of her home and having a solid plan to keep her home in order allows her to avoid little tasks from building up, preventing an overwhelming feeling in her life. With her flair for decorating and rearranging as well as her landscaping skills, Denise is able to create space for a serene pace to relax. While at the Center, Denise uses her keen sense of order and cleanliness to help keep the space of our staff and guests tidy and serene.
Vegetarian cuisine has always been an interest to Diana. In search of a place to work where she could really use her culinary talents as well as being an influence in the overall wellbeing of the guests she is cooking for led her to the Center.
At the Center, Diana provides our guests with healthy, nourishing meals while getting guests involved. Teaching the guests the importance of nutrition and how they can take these practices and introduce them into their daily lives for optimal balance.
Jessi is a Natural Nutrition Clinical Practitioner; she has completed her studies at the Australasian College of Natural Therapies. Her approach is centered on holistic mind-body methodology and she helps her clients to achieve their goals by challenging the mass-market restriction and deprivation type diets, instead developing individualized programs which do not focus on weight but promote improved nutrition.
At the center, Jessi provides guests with invaluable nutritional information through workshops, market tours and cooking demos.
Phone: 604 801-5477